Cheap FPV Options
Are you curious, but not $1,000 curious, about FPV? Well, you are not alone in that. The FPV hobby is just a tiny part of the overall drone world. Many people fly drones for photography and some simply get toy drones to buzz around the house.
You can grab a toy FPV drone for as little as $100 for the complete package. These packages include everything you need to fly: goggles, radios, batteries and the drone itself. These are called Ready to Fly (RTF) micro drones. You may have heard of these toy grade drones referred to as Tiny Whoops.
Some of these toy drones are no joke and many are used for racing. I'm heading to a race this weekend with a micro drone from NewBeeDrone that costs about $100 but does not include goggles or a transmitter. Most FPV pilots have a micro drone in their fleet.
A complete micro drone package will cost you between $60 and $250. The sweet spot is around $250 and this is what I would budget to get into the hobby at this level. That being said, here are a few options that you have listed below. I start with the cheapest.
Cheapest FPV Drone - $65
The Redpawz is really an amazing value considering what you get. It's literally everything you need to fly FPV. Normally I would expect to spend about $250 on a package like this, but I've found this drone for as little as $65.
That being said, I see this more as a get your feet wet kind of model and wouldn't expect you to bring this to the next Whoop race. This is the kind of thing you can buy and even if you end up upgrading to something bigger later (or just decide FPV is not for you) then at $65 you won't feel like you wasted too much money early on.
Eachine E010C Micro FPV Racing Drone
This is the less silly version of the drone above. Like the Redpawz you get the absolute most basic components. The radio will feel like a toy and the googles will have a small image, but both will be servicable and for first time FPV pilots both drones will probably seem amazing.
Click here to buy Eachine E010C FPV drone.
Click here to buy Eachine FPV goggles.
AcroBee Starter Kit (RTF)
This is the micro FPV drone I fly and it's by far one of my favorite drones. I take it to Tiny Whoop races and generally have a blast. This kit comes with everything you need to fly and the components are an upgrade from the Eachine and Redpawz above.
This drone crosses into hobby grade territory and the $250 price tag reflects that. While the radio in the cheaper FPV drones will only work with the drone that you buy with it, the radio with this Acrobee will work with any FPV drone that supports FrSky. FrSky is a standard in the FPV racing drone world.
What is interesting about this product is that it will grow with you. This micro runs on the same open source software as the big 5 inch racers and you can tune and customize it in the same way. You get an OSD in your goggles that shows you things like battery level and channels.
The only downfall with this drone is that they just can't keep it in stock. Lot's of pros fly this hardware and NewBeeDrone is a fairly small shop. Still, this is my absolute #1 recommendation for getting into FPV.
Click here to buy your Acrobee micro FPV drone.
Blade Inductrix Fpv Plus RTF
This model is comparable to the Acrobee above and comes in at the same price point. Blade Inductrix is a solid indoor FPV drone which comes packed with features. One of the best is “Meow Mode” which you use to flip the drone back up after a crash (you will appreciate this feature after the first few flights).
What is great about this model is how durable it is, the Inductrix is a truly solid drone. It's a little bit bigger than the other toy drones.
This is the model that I've bought for family members who want to fly and it's what I used myself to learn FPV. The only thing about this package is that the FPV experience is provided by a screen on the controller and not goggles. While this will be fine for most people, VR goggles do provide a more immersive experience that is easier to focus with. Of course, you can always pick on a pair of goggle in addition to the drone (the eachine goggles would work with this model.)
Click here to get your Blade Inductrix.
Click here to buy Eachine FPV goggles (optional).
Wizard x220 RTF
Just to be clear - this drone is NOT a recommendation. It is a solid first drone for outdoor FPV racing, but I wouldn't recommend starting with something this big. But, some people just want to skip all the beginning steps and try the real deal. My first drone was the last generation of the Wizard and it only lasted a day after I lost control and it disappeared over the horizon. This one is powerful, if you go this route take your time. You've been warned!
This model will bring your cost closer to the $400 mark and this will take you into hobby grade territory. While the Wizard series drones are not the best in the hobby, they are nice because they come “Ready to Fly” and the price point is a little bit lower than a full pro setup.
You will need to buy goggles for this drone and I'm including the link to the Eachine toy grade goggles below. But, any google will work with this drone so if you find a better deal or better goggles you can buy them.
One last thing about the Wizard - so this is the real 5 inch racer and if you are considering this model you are probably considering commiting more to the hobby. There are other options for this as well that go beyond the scope of this article. But, you may want to consider building your own drone or otherwise buying better equipment so do yourself a favor and at least check out the Pro FPV Setup Guide before hitting that buy button.
Click here to get your Wizard drone.
Click here to buy Eachine FPV goggles.
Go and pick one of these models and have a blast flying! While all are good picks I would recommend the Acrobee Starter Kit the most. You will have a blast and if you eventually get deeper into the hobby you can start with the Acrobee equipment. Plus, the Acrobee can be tuned and tinkered with in literally the same way as a hobby grade 5 inch since it runs on the same standard BetaFlight software. It's a great entry level model and one you will go back to even after you start flying those outdoor five inch racers